Renowned for its jazz and world-famous cuisine, Louisiana also boasts the flagship Louisiana State University (LSU), home to 28,000 students and 194 degree programmes.
Founded in 1860 from a college originally dedicated to seminary learning, LSU is located in the city of Baton Rouge, the state capital. It provides accessible, affordable education: the university claims its tuition fees are 15 per cent lower than its Southern counterparts, with LSU students graduating with 27 seven per cent less debt than the national average.
The university also prides itself on a hands-on approach to teaching that gives graduates practical skills to set them apart in the job market. Students are supported in securing work placements and internships throughout their time at LSU, with big named brands such as Vera Wang and Tommy Hilfiger, among many others.
LSU also boasts a large number of research facilities that support its rolling programme of sponsored-research projects and is the only public Carnegie-designated Research Extensive University in Louisiana.
Aside from academia, there is a plethora of clubs and societies to get involved with, many of which are run by students themselves, including The Daily Reveille, LSU’s student-run newspaper awarded the nation’s best all-around student newspaper by the Society of Professional Journalists in 2015.
LSU’s main campus also features a lake, several galleries, theaters and museums, while a recent renovation of the student union saw an additional 50,000 square feet developed for leisure facilities.
Louisiana itself is home to the top five happiest cities in the United States, Baton Rouge among them, according to a recent study by MarketWatch, while New Orleans (a short drive away) has been named the '#2 Best City in North America' by Travel + Leisure magazine.
Alumni of LSU include leading figures from the worlds of politics, business and education, as well as Pulitzer Prize winners, NBA champions, Oscar winners and NASA flight directors.